Technology and innovation

Automotive Council

SMMT technology and innovation activities aims to support the agenda set out in the Automotive Council and TSB’s UK Capability Report, launched in June 2010. Internal combustion engines, energy storage and management, lightweight vehicles and powertrain structures, power electronics and electrical machines and ITS are the strategic technologies identified by the Council. SMMT is involved in many of the Automotive Council’s Technology Work Streams, contributing to developing the industry on behalf of our members.

Automotive Council strategic technologies

The Automotive council identified five strategic technologies for the low carbon future of the industry, following work done by the NAIGT and TSB to assess the UK automotive industry’s capabilities in June 2010.

For each of these five “sticky” technologies, SMMT has created a document outlining key information for a number of centres of excellence identified as active in research in each of the technology disciplines.

Each research centre’s entry includes contact details, location, a brief description and signposting to further information. For further information, each document has an appendix list of publically funded research projects identified and collated by SMMT.

Click below to access each of the five strategic technology documents:

Additional research project information

One area of technology identified that sits outside the conventional vehicle technology agenda is Advanced Manufacturing. In recent years the industry has heavily invested in manufacturing in the UK, further supported by government through programmes such as the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative. To help support this, SMMT has additionally compiled a document in line with those created for the strategic technologies, that is available to download below.

Some research activities are of recognised importance to the automotive industry but do not objectively sit within one of the five strategic technology areas, such as aerodynamics. Information on research projects in these areas is collected below.

An additional area of the technology development process that has received significant support is that of vehicle demonstrator projects. These play an important part in the product development cycle and have been integral to the development of EVs.

Surface Transport Knowledge Transfer Network (TKTN)

The TKTN is an initiative set up by the Technology Strategy Board with an aim to support growth and development in the UK transport industries by facilitating knowledge sharing and collaborative working. As a member of the Steering Board SMMT is keen to ensure that the work undertaken by the TKTN reflect the needs of the industry as stated by the Automotive Council, and of our members.

Member support and engagement

We aim to provide the kind of information and assistance that supports our members in their R&D activities. You can be a member of the R&D interest group, simply e-mail to register your interest.